A caravan of dozens of vehicles paid a visit to a couple of Fairfield nursing homes just to say hi over the weekend.
Fairfield Fire Chief Scott Vaughan hatched the idea to assemble a parade of fire trucks, police and sheriff vehicles, and anyone else who wanted to join in and visit SunnyBrook Living Care Center and Parkview Care Center. On the afternoon of Sunday, March 29, the caravan drove by both nursing homes as residents inside waved to the vehicles, some of which displayed homemade signs saying “We Miss You,” “Stay Safe,” and “We’re All in This Together.”
Parkview Care Center Administrator Sarah Flattery said she was “totally overwhelmed” by the community’s generosity.
“It was so heartwarming, even tearful in a way,” she said. “In these uncertain times, it was great to see the community show its support. It’s touching to the residents to know they’re not alone.”
Jefferson County Chief Deputy Sheriff Bart Richmond said the caravan of vehicles waved at everybody as they drove by.
“They’ve been shut down to visitors for weeks,” Richmond said. “It was quite a procession of cars, and I’m glad so many people joined in. It was a really nice deal.”
Flattery said it’s been a rough few weeks for nursing home residents not just at Parkview but nearly everywhere the coronavirus has reached. In early March, Parkview restricted visitors and then on March 14 it announced a halt to communal dining and all group activities.
“First you’re saying ‘no loved ones,’ and now you’ve got to stay in your room, too?” Flattery said. “We’re trying to be creative in the way our residents can continue to communicate with their families through email and Skype.”
Flattery said the center is hosting bingo games where residents open their doors and listen to a caller in the hallway. It allows them to participate in a group game without getting too close to each other.
“We’ve got to make the best of it,” Flattery said.